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Ex-CNRP officials summoned

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Dim Saroeum (centre), a former Battambang provincial councillor, is among other former Cambodia National Rescue Party offcials who have been summoned for questioning. Photo supplied

Ex-CNRP officials summoned

The Banteay Meanchey provincial court summoned a former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) official for questioning over alleged “incitement to commit crimes” and “discrediting judicial decisions”.

Meanwhile, another CNRP official in Battambang province has been summoned to court for a second time.

Sok Keo Bandith, the deputy prosecutor at Banteay Meanchey Provincial Court, summoned Tuot Veasna, a former CNRP executive chief for Mongkol Borei district, to appear in court on July 10, said the summons Veasna received on Wednesday.

Veasna told The Post on Thursday that he did not know why he had been summoned. He said he had previously been called on three times by district police to make written contracts.

The first regarded his involvement in the “clean finger campaign” before last July’s national elections, while another came after showing support on January 4 for CNRP co-founder Sam Rainsy being made “acting president” of the Supreme Court-dissolved party.

He said he had most recently been called on after showing support on January 10 for an announced return of Rainsy to the Kingdom.

He said he had already signed three written contracts with police promising to stop such activities.

“One was related to our message of support for president [Rainsy]. Meeting with the police, I made written contracts. After they were signed, I have not been involved in any political activities. I stayed at home and helped my wife with daily work."

“But on Wednesday I received a summons ordering me to go to court on July 10. I was at home, why did they summon me? I think this is to threaten me, but I will go to court on July 10 to clarify matters,” Veasna said.

In another case, Dim Saroeum, a former Battambang provincial councillor, was summoned by the local court’s deputy prosecutor Heng Luy to appear on Friday over an allegation of “violating the Supreme Court’s ruling”.

Saroeun was part of a group totalling 35 people called for questioning over the past months regarding the allegation.

“The only reason I can think of is that after 26 people were questioned by the court, I greeted them one by one [in front of the court]. I think this could be the reason behind it,” he said on Thursday.

“This case is politically motivated. It is a threat to my spirit by pressuring my freedom, something guaranteed by the Constitution,” he said.

Battambang Provincial Court prosecutors Luy and Sok Keo Bandith could not be reached for comment on Thursday.

In April and May, 26 of 35 summoned CNRP members and supporters were grilled over the allegation they had violated the Supreme Court’s ruling which saw the party dissolved in November 2017.

Nine of the 35 have yet to be questioned by prosecutor Chheun Sophon, who told The Post on Thursday that he had not yet re-summoned them for questioning.

Sam Sokong, a lawyer representing the 35, said he had also been asked to defend Saroeun in the latest case, and due to time constraints he had asked the court for a postponement.

He said he had not been asked to defend Veasna in Banteay Meanchey.

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